Contact email: mesreads AT gmail.com
###Winner Announcement Posts are linked here.###

GIVEAWAYS ARE NOW LOCATED ON THEIR OWN PAGE - CLICK ON TAB ABOVE; Giveaways also linked on right sidebar.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Sunday Words of Encouragement April 22, 2018

Our Sunday School teacher continued a message on Christians and sin. Service began with lovely worship and then Pastor proceeded with his Sermon series on Relationsslips. This series addresses the question: “How do we navigate live in a Godly way?”

Last week’s message dealt with Guilt – a debt that “I owe you”.
Last week’s Point: Confession is the way to relieve the weight of guilt.

Pastor stated that he has a video of his daily plan, but it often gets interrupted. This causes frustration. When we tie our hopes and dreams to someone else, it creates Expectations. Expectations that aren’t met create problems. [We need to learn to put our trust in God, not others. Psalm 37:1-5, 8.]

Family and friends include expectations. When they, or others, don’t meet our expectations, a new debt is created. Now it is a “you owe me” debt. Sometimes there are few solutions. How do these debts ever get paid? Most of the debts owed to us can never be repaid.


The only way to get rid of disappointment, bitterness and anger is to cancel the debt. Do not let them continue to control your anger. While in prison Paul wrote: “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.” Ephesians 4:31.

Point: Just as God has forgiven you of your unpayable debt, so you must forgive the unpayable debt of others.

You have the power to set yourself free from disappointment and anger. Matthew 6:14-15.
Look at your calendar and make a specific date to declare your freedom by forgiving the debt owed to you.
1. Identify who you think owes you a death.
2. State what (you perceive) they owe
3. Cancel the debt by speaking forgiveness.
4. Dismiss it so it does not continue to poison or taint your feelings.

I found this song that I think fits perfectly!
Verses for Today:
Ephesians 4:31-32 (NIV)
31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Lord, reveal to me any bitterness I hold toward others and help me to forgive and release it. I give you Praise and Thanks for Your great loving example!

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Saturday, April 21, 2018

Sharing Beyond Books #342 Comment Giveaway April 21, 2018

Hello again and Welcome to Sharing Beyond Books, SBB!

Aargh! I turned around and it is already three weeks into April! I am going to continue to post this event biweekly (every other week) for now. My work is so hectic that I appreciate the break every other weekend. Thank you for understanding and continuing to participate.

Thanks to everyone who commented last week.
Four commenters are the only readers in their household. Four others are lucky that everyone reads! Four are the biggest readers in their families and three more have others in the family that read too. I like that Linda's took to reading as the youngest in a family who all read.

The Winner from SBB #341 comments is: #8 Elizabeth who can make a GC choice if international or book choice from the Updated (**Finally!) ARC/Review titles or (recently updated) Love and Christmas titles - all linked near the end of the post.

**NOTE: I did post an Updated ARC and Other books for Giveaways. I have to go back and list the titles -- someday.
Please let me know your choice by completing the WINNER FORM.

WEEK #342
(One Question.)

Rubynreba asks: Would you step in if you felt your adult child was being overly strict with your grandchild who is a teenager?? [If you are closer to teen years or have siblings with children we would still like your thoughts on the question.]
I can certainly see that this could be sensitive. My grandkids are just reaching the teen years and so far troubles have been minimal. (Praise God.) We are close enough with our children that I can see me speaking my piece as gently as I could. Being careful not to speak in front of the young person - just as we were told not to disagree with our spouse in front of the kids. (And no, we did not always keep to that rule when we should have.)
How to Discipline Your Child: Effective Consequences for Children Who Don't Listen -  "You can’t punish a kid into better behavior. So while it’s certainly tempting, taking everything away from your child is unlikely to be effective." Learn some parenting techniques that might actually work from Megan Devine, LCPC. For more Pins on parenting difficult kids, see: http://www.pinterest.com/addfreesources/difficult-children-of-all-ages-adhd-odd-cd-and-asp/
Image found at Pinterest.
Magnetic Tiles Sayings: Family House Rules

<<<Who else remembers these rules?
 Image also found at Pinterest from German Gift Outlet.


Thanks to those who are sending in Questions. DON'T BE SHY! Surely everyone has a Q or two you'd like to ask. Input suggestions in this Suggested Question Form. At the end of each month I draw from the suggestions I used during the month and that person will get a book choice or GC. I thank everyone for submitting questions. Thanks for sending in questions! The supply of questions is dwindling so share some if you think of any -- even if they are duplicates I'll weed through or try to modify.
Questions this month were provided by CarolL and Rubynreba who each get $2.50 toward GC or 1/2 book credit.

Your turn to share. Rubynreba asks: Would you step in if you felt your adult child was being overly strict with your grandchild who is a teenager??

SBB Comment Winners can choose a selection from the Updated ARC and Other books, including the "Love" and Christmas titles all in one post.

SBB Rules:
a) Must be a follower.
b) Share a comment on the question above.
Open internationally and an international winner may get a smaller book or a $5.00 GC if I decide the mailing is too much.
I will pick a Comment winner from all comments made through Saturday May 5, 2018 at 5 PM central.

Book Review and Giveaway: Dog Training the American Male by Steve Alten

This romantic comedy has its moments.
Dog Training the American Male
by Steve Alten
Website: here
ISBN: 978-1-943957-00-2
Publication Date: February 14, 2018 (Orig. Release September 2016; under LA Knight)
Pages: 262
Price: $4.99 (Kindle Version)
Publisher: WJM Books, an Imprint of A&M Publishing, LLC.
ASIN: B01LQU0TTO
Genre: Humor, Romantic Comedy
My Rating: 3.75 of 5.0


Meet Dr. Nancy Beach, a relationship counselor who hosts a local radio show called Love's a Beach. One problem: The relationship guru cant seem to make her own relationships work, sending her credibility and ratings into the toilet. Meet Jacob Cope, a walking thesaurus of phobias -- a Lehman Brothers casualty who's lost his job and swagger and now yearns to be a ventriloquist. When Nancy and Jacob are set up on a blind date and hit it off, their siblings, desperate to be rid of them, encourage the young couple to move in together. When the honeymoon stage abruptly ends, Jacob attempts to mend the fence by adopting a dog; a big dog and Nancy flips out . . . until she realizes the dog trainer's techniques can be used to housebreak Jacob and save her radio career.


Review:
Dr. Nancy Beach, a relationship counselor, hosts a radio show called Love’s a Beach. She also leads several private counsel groups, most of which are dwindling. Nancy has a major problem because she hasn’t had a successful relationship to serve as example. She has made bad choices in boyfriends who have been unfaithful liars and thieves.

Jacob Cope is a former Lehman Brothers’ financial guru who lost his job, perks and status with the economic crash. He has occasionally lived in an old van but is currently in his brother’s guest house. Jacob hopes to move to comedy work as a ventriloquist with his primary dummy, a George Bush dummy.

Nancy and Jacob are set up by their siblings who are eager to get them out of their living arrangements. The two hit it off and are encouraged by their siblings to move in together. It only takes a few days for Nancy to be unhappy with Jacob’s male behaviors: smelly shoes dropped at the door, toilet seat left up, expectations of being waited on. Jacob gets a dog hoping to appease Nancy and refocus her attention. The dog isn’t a cute, little Bichon but a large, untrained German Shepard.

Nancy arranges training for the dog which turns out to provide material for her show. Ratings really pick up as Nancy describes using the dog training techniques to train her man. Meanwhile there are a couple eccentric women, including one of Nancy’s bosses, who are chasing Jacob and bribing him with work engagements.

The book is promoted as romantic comedy and it is funny. My problem was wading through the first half of the book. Jacob’s brother is a gynecologist and the beginning is full of gutter language and crude, tasteless sexual banter. I came close to stopping at 12%, then 25%. I think I am glad that I pushed through because there was fun as the book progressed. The description of the impact of the job loss on Jacob creates a good picture of a fallen executive. There are also some very good psychological tips that I really like. There were scenes set on a fancy boat in the Boca Raton Inlet that I could relate to. On the other hand there were several sexual scenes that made me want to puke. I find it is interesting this was written by a man but it is doubtful I would try another book by this author. I am sure there are readers who will enjoy the fun of this; just be prepared for the grit and crudeness.

Source: Ralina Shaw PR. This will qualify for a 2018 title on my Alphabet Challenge list.

GIVEAWAY provided by the publisher through Ralina Shaw PR:
Dog Training the American Male
One Hardcopy Print Book (with the older cover) (US Only)



(Don't forget to fill in the form for entry!)
For 3 Extra Bonus entries
(a) comment on the review or (b) visit the author's website and tell me something you found there.

* This contest is open to US only for the hardback book.
* This contest will close 5 PM (Central) May 5, 2018.
Winners are asked to respond on the winners form linked in the announcement or by email.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Audible Book Review: Portrait in Death by J.D. Robb

This has warm romance to offset a creepy killer.
Portrait in Death
In Death, book 16
By: J. D. Robb
Narrated by: Susan Ericksen

Series: In Death, Book 16
Length: 14 hrs and 2 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 06-06-13
Language: English
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Genre: Female Detective, Mystery
My Rating: 4.75 of 5.0


Publisher's Summary
After a tip from a reporter, Eve Dallas finds the body of a young woman in a Delancey Street dumpster. Just hours before, the news station had mysteriously received a portfolio of professional portraits of the woman. The photos seemed to be nothing out of the ordinary for any pretty young woman starting a modeling career. Except that she wasn't a model. And that these photos were taken after she had been murdered. Now Dallas is on the trail of a killer who's a perfectionist and an artist. He carefully observes and records his victim's every move. And he has a mission: to own every beautiful young woman's innocence, to capture her youth and vitality - in one fateful shot....
©2003 Nora Roberts (P)2013 Brilliance Audio, Inc.


Review:
This episode kicks off with Eve looking forward to peace at home as Roark’s majordomo, Summerset, is set to leave on vacation. A misstep causes a delay in that happy plan.

Eve gets a dead body tip from her reporter friend, Nadine. They stand at odds when Eve first refuses Nadine access at the crime scene and then demands that Nadine turn over any files and photos she has regarding the killing.

The photos show a young woman staged as a model – in death. Eve has no witnesses, but several suspects emerge as they pick apart the photos. She must discover an artist obsessed with capturing the innocence and vitality of his victims.

While Eve is busy investigating, Roarke learns a disturbing bit of his own history that causes him to withdraw into himself. The resulting tension and make up scenes are a strong part of this book. JD Robb (Nora Roberts) does an exquisite job of conveying Roarke’s pain, anger and withdrawal. Eve has to fight to get him to share what he has learned. Then, as he has often supported her, she must make an effort to be there when he needs her. This was a wonderfully warm romance element during the investigation of a twisted killer.

The usual great dialogue rapport is present between Eve and Roarke and with Eve’s team members, Peabody, McNab, Baxter and Feeney. There are also moments with Nadine, Summerset and Mavis. All fun and feisty. There is some bad language and of course grittiness related to murders. Still, this provides engaging characters with new mysteries in each book. I recommend the series to those who enjoy strong female detectives hunting down twisted killers.

Audible Notes: Susan Ericksen is the voice of these characters. She portrays each with a unique voice and energy suitable to their character. It is a pleasure to listen to this series which sometimes keeps me up too late. As always, this is great entertainment and narrated with skill and personality.

Source: Audible 2016 sale purchase. This qualifies for Audiobook, TBR and "P" for my Alphabet Challenge.

Martha's Bookshelf***Friday Pick Giveaway April 20, 2018

Happy Friday!

I am so tired tonight after two day conference, 7 hours travel yesterday and half day trial today.
I am nodding over my keyboard! 
I didn't get a new box last week - I hope to this Saturday.

TO ENTER FRIDAY PICK

US Entrants: Leave a comment and tell me WHICH BOOK you would like to get from the Friday Pick lists.

INTERNATIONAL: Leave a comment indicating "Gift Card" (see further comments near the end of the post.)


CUT OFF TIME IS THURSDAY NIGHTS AT 9:00 PM CENTRAL so I do not have to stay up too late to do the winner post! I will randomly pick two winners to announce Friday mornings with the next Pick post.

Thank you to all who entered the April 13 Pick. There was one automatic win again this week. Automatic wins are those who requested the book four times without other people asking for that book during those weeks. There were no titles blocked.
AUTO: Carol L gets Between the Devil and Desire

CONGRATULATIONS
to Random.org picked Winners from April 13 Pick:
MARJORIE gets a GC and
ASHFA gets a GC.

All winners please fill in the Winner's Acceptance Form or email me to confirm your win, send your snail mail address information and let me know if you would like bookmarks - sensual, sexy or sweet bookmarks. {The form is new because Google changed their forms and the old one wasn't letting me print out the responses.}

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Oh how I would love a spring of books!
Image found at Pinterest.

New Book Group #77 February 16, 2018
I thought I would look for some 'Springish' titles but that didn't happen. Hope someone finds a title or two you like.
PAIRS
Betty Neals: Tabitha by Moonlight and Fate Takes a Hand
Nora Robert: Hot Ice (spine creased) and Sanctuary
SINGLES:
My Lord Conqueror by Samantha James
Surrender by Pamela Clare
Dessert Rogue by Suzanne Simmons
The Rose and the Shield by Elaine Barrieri
Hannah’s Courtship by Emma Miller
Someone to Watch Over Me by Judith McNaught
Big Stone Gap by Adriana Trigiani
Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
A Husband’s Wicked Ways by Jane Feather
Hot on Her Heels by Susan Mallery
Indigo Blue by Catherine Anderson
Between the Devil and Desire (Scoundrels of St. James Book 2) by Lorraine Heath (hardback)


New Book Group #76 November 3, 2017
21 books remain of the original 37:

I finally Have them Listed!
Boots & Booties by Kristine Rolofson
Saucer the Conquest by Stephen Coonts
Echo Burning by Lee Child
The Scorpion Seducer by Bonnie Vanak
Hell On Earth by David L. Porter
Tempted All Night by Liz Carlyle
Day of the Dead by J.A. Jance
White Night by Jim Butcher
Five Gold Rings Anthology Constance O’Banyon and three others
Riders of the Purple Sage by Zane Grey
The Glimpses of the Moon by Edith Wharton
Depraved Heart by Patricia Cornwell
Crisscross by Harmon Henkin
Wizard’s Daughter by Catherine Coulter
Pearl Beyond Price by Claire Delacroix
Maelstrom by Anne McCaffrey
The Wedding by Nicholas Sparks
The Wicked Wyckerly by Patricia Rice
Inhuman Condition by Clive Barker
Night Whispers by Judith McNaught
101 Commonsense Rules for the Office by John R. Brinkerhoff

 THESE BOOKS CHOSEN/WON ARE THE ONES STRICKEN HERE:
Finger Licken' Fifteen
How to Tame a Highland Warrior
The Texan
Total Control
Atlantis Found
Stephanie Laurens Pair
Desperado 
Rebellious Desires 
Forget Me Not 
The Eighth Commandment
Ghost Riders
The Manning Brides by Debbie Macomber 
Shadow Music 
Corbin's Fancy 
Hawk's Lady


This shelf of 35 books are what is left from Groups #1 (11/27/09) through Group #75 September 29, 2017
(Title list reads left at bottom to right at top - 14 titles.)
Rehabilitation
Secret Blessing
Named of the Dragon
Daring

Aunt Erma's Cope Book
JoAnn Ross: Confessions
The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan
The New Birth Order Book by Dr. Kevin Leman
A Kiss Before Dawn by Kimberly Logan
The Fireman’s Fair by Josephine Humphreys (Hardcover)
Bound by Destiny by Rayka Mennen

Rainbow Mars by Larry Niven
There Was A Little Girl by Ed McBain (Audio Cassettes)
Love's Brazen Fire by Betina Krahn 

(Title list reads left at bottom to right at top - 21 titles.)
Plan of Attack by Dan Brown
(*Three more very old books from my Gothics box.)
*The Man in the Garden by Paule Mason (1969 - yellowed)
Fire Dancer by Ann Maxwell
*Four books are very old; pulled from a box of gothic novels I found.
*Maggie – Her Marriage by Taylor Caldwell (1953 very old, yellowed pages, some stain damage doesn't effect reading)
First Things First by Stephen R. Covey- Audio Cassette
Trilogy Of Mysteries Audio Book Shadow Prey, There Was A Little Girl, Smokescreen Audio Cassettes (NOT CDs)
Raintree Haunted by Linda Winstead Jones (spine creases)
The Shadowing by Joan Overfield
The Sweetheart Dance by Patti Ann Colt
BOX 4 2015 (reboxed from Boxes 47-53)
Undateable by Ellen Rakieten & Anne Coyle
Jezebel by Katherine Sutcliff
The Hidden Truth of Cytech's Randall Forty by Vickie Kennedy
Breakfast in Bed by Sandra Brown - Audio Cassette Tapes (link is for mass media version)
BOX 3 2015 (reboxed from Boxes 39- 47)
Shetland Summer by Janet Lynnford
BOX 2 2015 (reboxed from Boxes 24- 38)
The Trailsman: Texas Lead Slingers by Jon Sharpe
A Courtesans Guide to Getting Your Man by Susan Donovan and Celeste Bradley -- NOTE This book has dog bite damage; it is missing half back cover and the edges of pages in the back third of the book... it does not effect the text but I will understand if no one wants this one
An Honorable Man by Rosemary Rogers (spine creases)
The Willful Widow by Valerie King (spine wear)
Foundation (Foundation Novels) by Isaac Asimov
BOX #1 2015 (reboxed from Boxes 1- 23)
Ghost Writer (Shivers #3) by M.D. Spenser
Alien Chronicles - The Crimson Claw by Deborah Chester

If you saw the pictures posted of my bookshelves and boxes you know I do have lots of books! And that doesn't include the other eight or so boxes at my office!! And more books as I find deals too good to pass up! I am sharing my book bounty by these Friday Pick Giveaways.

I started Friday Pick on November 27, 2009 and in almost EIGHT years I have posted 75 groups of 16 (1,200) books to find new homes! (as of November 2, 2017).

I am happy to say that so far about 1,157+books have found new homes through this feature! YAY. [A month or so ago I posted I had reached 2000 books given away. As I calculated the numbers 11/2/17 I realized that had to be an error. I realized I went from 1098 to 2001 instead of 1101. Guess I was tired; sorry for the error.] I have to update my print out to check the exact number sent out - a few were never claimed. I periodically update the lists - deleting those won. You can still go to the Friday Pick list link to see older posts and the older lists book pictures if you want!

Note rules here regarding international entries.
Because postage to overseas can be prohibitive I am willing to give a $5.00 book certificate to international winners - Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders, ARe, TWRP, ClassAct Books, eTreasures, Desert Breeze, etc....you tell me where and I'll set it up. So for my overseas visitors your comment may indicate a smaller book and I'll check postage or note your choice of gift card.

I learned that The Book Depository does not ship to everywhere. The postage for some of the books to far away places runs between $7.00 and $10.00 and up. Since I would award $5.00 for The Book Depository to an international winner, as an alternative you may choose a smaller book and we will hope the postage will not exceed $6.00. If the postage is more, or if you want to pick a larger book and you are willing to pay any extra postage beyond the $6.00 I will work with you on that. This may not make a difference to many but if it helps one or two of you to give one of my books a home that will make me happy too. :o)

Repeating this helpful blog tip: You can right click on a link and you will be given the choice to open the link in a new window or tab so you do not navigate away from the screen you are on!! I use this all the time!

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Sunday Post April 15, 2018/It's Monday! What are You Reading? Plus Mailbox Monday April 16, 2018.


I am linking with Sunday Post at Caffeinated Book Reviewer.

It's Monday! What Are You Reading now at The Book Date.

What Are You Reading, is where we gather to share what we have read this past week and what we plan to read this week. It is a great way to network with other bloggers, see some wonderful blogs, and put new titles on your reading list.

Our week was busy, as always but we felt a relief of tension as we caught up on closing work. I got some legal work done each day too but still have more. I had one trial last week and have another coming up this week. I also had to spend time working on taxes. I know -- I shouldn't have waited till the last minute. to spend time preparing for two upcoming trials.
Heather and I headed out Sunday for a leadership conference so that is going to use up the beginning of my week.

My reading/listening was again a little slower this week, as was writing reviews. I finished 1 ebook and 1 Audio title. I posted only two reviews and my usual memes.

I only visited 26 blogs last week. I just have to fit in what I can.
Shout Out this week for Fiction Books where Yvonne always seems to have new to me books - good looking thrillers and mysteries.
Thank you to all the nice people who visit me.

These were last week's posts:

Finished Reading:
1. Audible/Smartphone (TBR)


Portrait in Death
In Death, book 16
By: J. D. Robb
This has warm romance as well as a creepy killer.
Source: Audible 2016 sale purchase.

Click on book title for full description.



2. eBook/Kindle (NGTBR)


Mind Game: A Novel (Eve Duncan)
by Iris Johansen
The strong suspense and sharp romantic tension reminds me why I enjoy this author.
Source: NetGalley 2017.
Click on book title for full description.



Currently Reading:
1. Audible/Smartphone (2018)


Start with Why
How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action
By: Simon Sinek
Narrated by: Simon Sinek
Length: 7 hrs and 18 mins
As we started the drive this morning Heather noted that Aspire was not the right book for the conference.
This is the correct book.
We listened to about a half of it today and it is good for business.
Source: Audible Purchase 2018.

Publisher's Summary
The inspiring, life-changing best seller by the author of Leaders Eat Last and Together Is Better.
In 2009 Simon Sinek started a movement to help people become more inspired at work and, in turn, inspire their colleagues and customers. Since then, millions have been touched by the power of his ideas, including more than 28 million who've watched his TED Talk based on Start with Why - the third most popular TED video of all time.
Sinek starts with a fundamental question: Why are some people and organizations more innovative, more influential, and more profitable than others? Why do some command greater loyalty from customers and employees alike? Even among the successful, why are so few able to repeat their success over and over?
People like Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and the Wright Brothers had little in common, but they all started with why. They realized that people won't truly buy into a product, service, movement, or idea until they understand the why behind it.
Start with Why shows that the leaders who've had the greatest influence in the world all think, act, and communicate the same way - and it's the opposite of what everyone else does. Sinek calls this powerful idea The Golden Circle, and it provides a framework upon which organizations can be built, movements can be led, and people can be inspired. And it all starts with why.
©2017 Simon Sinek (P)2017 Penguin Audio



2. LBCPrint (TBR)


Know Your Bible: All 66 Books Explained and Applied
By: Paul Kent
This is our March read for Ladies Book Club. I haven't quite finished this as I am enjoying soaking in the summaries.
Source: 2017 Purchase at CBD.
Click on book title for full description.



3. Audible/Smartphone (TBR)



Hunting in Bruges: Hunters' Guild, Book 1
by E.J. Stevens
Narrator: Melanie A. Mason, Anthony Bowling
Duration: 7 hrs and 10 mins
I've listened to a couple of chapters and think this will be fun hunting.
Source: Author for Review and Giveaway Post.
Publisher's Summary
Finalist for the 2017 Raven Award for best urban fantasy.
The only thing worse than being a hunter in the fae-ridden city of Harborsmouth, is hunting vampires in Bruges.
The medieval city of Bruges is quaint, but the local Hunters' Guild is understaffed, the canals are choked with dead bodies, and there's no shortage of supernatural predators as likely suspects.
On second thought, maybe Bruges isn't so bad after all.
With a desire to prove herself, protect the innocent, and advance within the ranks of the Hunters' Guild, Jenna Lehane hits the cobbled streets of Bruges with blades at the ready. Someone, or something, is murdering tourists and dumping their bodies in the city's scenic canals. With the help of a mysterious stranger, Jenna begins to piece together clues that are dotted throughout the city like blood spatter.
Determined to stop the killings, Jenna delves into a bloody local history that only raises more questions - but some secrets are best left buried. Jenna must put her combat training to the test as she struggles to unearth the truth about an ancient enemy.



4. eBook/Kindle (Publisher 2018)


Let There Be Light
by Dan Gordon and Sam Sorbo
I keep working on my NetGalley titles that fit Alphabet Challenge too.
Source: NetGalley 2017.
Sol Harkens has it all. A new best seller, a gorgeous model girlfriend, immense success. He’s the Mohammad Ali of outspoken atheist celebrities. But not everything is perfect in Sol Harkens’ life. After losing his son to cancer he dedicated himself to denying God and parlayed his attacks on Christianity into a lucrative business. But Sol is empty inside. His party lifestyle has isolated him from his ex-wife, Katy, and their two sons. He resents their unrelenting faith and Katy’s prayers for his soul.

When Sol’s self-destructive habits end in a serious car crash, he wakes up to learn he was clinically dead for four minutes. Being dead isn’t what bothers him. It’s the voice. Five simple words that refuse to let him go: “Daddy, let there be light.”



5. Audio/MP3 (TBR)


Devil’s Due
Destroyermen, Book 12
By: Taylor Anderson
Narrated by: William Dufris
Series: Destroyermen, Book 12
Length: 19 hrs and 22 mins
I'm actually half way through this listening at night.
Source: 2017 Audible Credit Purchase.
Publisher's Summary
Taylor Anderson continues his powerful New York Times best-selling series of alternate history and military strategy, as the conflict is about to become terrifyingly personal....
Captain Matt Reddy and the crew of the USS Walker have been fighting for their lives ever since their ship was swept from the Pacific to another world and they became embroiled in a deadly conflict between their Lemurian allies and the ravening Grik. But things are about to get worse. With Reddy's family and allies held prisoner by the mad General Kurokawa, the mysterious League and evil Dominion plotting schemes of their own, and the Grik trying to build their swarm and concentrate power, Reddy faces danger on all sides. Although desperate to confront Kurokawa, Captain Reddy fears he's subordinating the war effort for personal reasons. But Kurokawa is too dangerous to be left alone. With the mighty League battleship Savoie at his command, he plots a terrible vengeance against Reddy and his tiny, battered destroyer. The stage is set for a devastating cataclysm, and Reddy and his allies will have to risk everything to protect what they hold dear.
©2017 Taylor Anderson (P)2017 Tantor



6. Audible/Smartphone (2018)



Aspire
By: Kevin Hall
Narrator: Patrick Lawlor
Duration: 5 hrs and 32 mins
This  was the wrong book for the conference. 

But I think it will still be worthwhile. 
I hope to listen on the way home.
Source: Audible 2018 sale purchase.

Click on book title for full description.


April 16, 2018 - I continue on track with my morning reading the One Year Bible plan on my smartphone. It is a great way to start my day and I share the joy of the word with other friends on the YouVersion Bible App. You can check out the audio on the companion commentary online.


I completed 2 books and posted 2 reviews on the blog. That keeps me to 3 current reviews.
I am behind again linking at Goodreads, Amazon and Audible.

My NetGalley shelf is at 12 and I still have one committed author title in queue and many through InstaFreebie. I have more new author requests but still haven't replied.


Welcome to Mailbox Monday.

Mailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week and explore great book blogs. This Meme started with Marcia at A Girl and Her Books (fka The Printed Page) and after a tour of hosts has returned to its permanent home at Mailbox Monday. Thanks to the ladies sharing hosting duties: Leslie of Under My Apple Tree, Serena of Savvy Verse & Wit and (yours truly). Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.
Nothing new this week.
I didn't accept or receive any review titles.
I resisted Audible daily deal titles and Kindle deals this week. However I purchased one work related title.
I picked up some  free kindle titles as usual. (Note these are in my Amazon library, NOT on my Kindle until I download and transfer them.)
Are your mailbox and TBR piles blooming?

Review Titles
NONE


Won
NONE


Purchased
Audible Purchase (on sale)
Start with Why 
How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action 
By: Simon Sinek
Narrated by: Simon Sinek
See full description above under Current Reading.


Free
I added only 36 free titles to my Kindle library this week. (I was just too title most nights to download titles. Titles found linked through Bookbub, Bookfun, Ereader News Today, Free Par-tay, Ignite Your Book, Inspired Reads, Pixel of Ink or Kindle ebooks.

Sunday Words of Encouragement April 15, 2018

I’ll be on the road today so will miss part of church service.
I’m sharing an abbreviated version of the devotional I shared at our Saturday Prayer meeting. These thoughts were in my morning devotional from YouVersion Bible in One Year 2018. The devotionals are shared by Nicky and Pippa Gumbel. The MSE comments are mine.

Eight Things That Really Matter to God:
1. Psalm 44:1-12 Trust Him
What do you place your trust in?
(MSE:) Or “Who”? We need to recognize that what we accomplish is through God’s hands, not our own.
2. Luke 13:31 14:14 Courage
Do you find that you sometimes take decisions based on fear?
(MSE:) If we Trust that God has all in His capable hands then we can have courage to face troubles that may come.
3. Compassion
Is your heart moved by the people you come across?
(MSE:) We need to try to have a heart like Jesus when it comes to dealing with people, near and far.
4. Humility
Do you worry about your status compared to others?
(MSE:) Jesus wants us to come to Him like little children, not arrogant, self-dependent people.
5. Poverty
Are you tempted to spend time with people of influence and wealth who will be able to pay you back?
(MSE:) Tempted may not be the right word for me but it is more likely that we spend time with friends of similar status. It is important to seek out and include those who can’t afford to pay us back.
6. Deuteronomy 15:1-16:20 Generosity
Do you ever find yourself being a little mean or penny-pinching?
(MSE:) One of my gifts is giving so I don’t tend to penny-pinch when I can help others sincerely in need. I firmly believe we are blessed to be a blessing to others.
7. Remembrance
Do you easily forget what God has done for you?
(MSE) When you remember what God has done for you everyday you reinforce Trust, Courage, Compassion, Humility and Generosity. 😊
8. Justice
Do you care about justice?
(MSE:) I believe doing what is right in God’s eyes is how we strive toward righteousness. Thank God that He administers justice with mercy.

I think this song fits today for me.
A Verse for Today (My Favorite Verse!)
Micah 6:8 (ESV)
8 He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?

Lord, I pray: Help me to value these things that You value.
Related image

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Audiobook Review: The Mysterious Howling, Book 1 by Maryrose Wood

This is a fun and charming story for all ages.
The Mysterious Howling, Book 1
The Incorrigible Children Of Ashton Place
by Maryrose Wood
Read by Katherine Kellgren
Children Ages 8+ • 5.5 hrs. • Unabridged • © 2010
Publisher: HarperAudio
Genre: Children, Fantasy, Growing Up, Middle Grade
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0
Narration: 4.5


Newly graduated from England's Swanbourne Academy for Poor Bright Females, prim and very proper Miss Penelope Lumley is hired as a governess for three children living at Ashton Place. The 15-year-old Penny takes it in stride when she discovers the children were raised by wolves and communicate only in barks and growls. Katherine Kellgren's outstanding interpretation sets just the right tone in this clever and amusing tale. Her ability to speak effortlessly with varying British accents—from aristocratic to Cockney—allows listeners to become completely absorbed. Kellgren's reserved Miss Lumley rises to the challenge when the snobbish Lady Ashton insists she must civilize the three orphans before her holiday ball. Kellgren's charming narration will leave listeners howling for the next installment. L.A.C. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award © AudioFile 2010, Portland, Maine [Published: APRIL 2010]


Review:
Miss Penelope is just 15 years old when she accepts her first governess position. She has just graduated from England's Swanbourne Academy for Poor Bright Females and expects to be prim and proper for her new position. She doesn’t expect to find three feral youngsters who were raised by wolves. Lord Ashton has taken the children on as curious wards. His new, young wife wants nothing to do with the children, except that he insists. Lady Ashton claims the children are incorrigible and is ready to send them away unless Penny can prepare them to behave properly for the holiday ball she will be hosting.

Penny has always worked well with animals and she quickly manages to establish a report with the children, allowing them to choose their own names: Alexander, Beowulf, and Cassiopeia. They are bright and fast learners under her kind and imaginative training. The children seem to be ready for the ball but it is hard to anticipate what might happen with mischievous children. Penny becomes alarmed when she hears some of the guests talk about hunting as it sounds like they planned to hunt the wolf children! Things go fairly well with the children even prepared to provide entertainment. Then the snobbish Lady Ashton tries to drown her sorrows and the hired entertainers bring on a threatening situation causing an uproar to ensue.

I was caught into the story right away and enjoyed the light eeriness of it. Penny is a remarkable young lady and I enjoyed her undefeatable attitude and her references to the quotable wisdom of Ms. Swanbourne. The children are precious in their own growly way. This is a delightful and charming story, certainly suitable for young audiences as well as adults. I recommend this to middle graders and adults who enjoy childhood charm.

Audio Notes: Katherine Kellgren does a wonderful job with the narration. The British accents are precisely fitting from lofty to low, and she has fun with the howls and grunts of the children!
This is definitely a fun experience in audio.

Source: SYNC 2013 Download. This qualifies for 2018TBR, Audiobook and Alphabet Challenges.

Friday, April 13, 2018

Martha's Bookshelf***Friday Pick Giveaway April 13, 2018

Happy Friday the 13th!

We've had another busy week but feel like things are under control again. The tension is lessening. 
I hope to get a picture of a new set of books this weekend.

TO ENTER FRIDAY PICK

US Entrants: Leave a comment and tell me WHICH BOOK you would like to get from the Friday Pick lists.

INTERNATIONAL: Leave a comment indicating "Gift Card" (see further comments near the end of the post.)


CUT OFF TIME IS THURSDAY NIGHTS AT 9:00 PM CENTRAL so I do not have to stay up too late to do the winner post! I will randomly pick two winners to announce Friday mornings with the next Pick post.

Thank you to all who entered the April 6 Pick. There was one automatic win again this week. Automatic wins are those who requested the book four times without other people asking for that book during those weeks. There were no titles blocked.
AUTO: BN100 gets the Nora Robert's Pair

CONGRATULATIONS
to Random.org picked Winners from April 6 Pick:
BECKY gets My Lord Conqueror and
MIKI gets a GC.

All winners please fill in the Winner's Acceptance Form or email me to confirm your win, send your snail mail address information and let me know if you would like bookmarks - sensual, sexy or sweet bookmarks. {The form is new because Google changed their forms and the old one wasn't letting me print out the responses.}
Image result for Mid April and Books
Of course I love the idea of books in bloom!
Image found at Newburyport Horticultural Society.

New Book Group #77 February 16, 2018
I thought I would look for some 'Springish' titles but that didn't happen. Hope someone finds a title or two you like.
PAIRS
Betty Neals: Tabitha by Moonlight and Fate Takes a Hand
Nora Robert: Hot Ice (spine creased) and Sanctuary
SINGLES:
My Lord Conqueror by Samantha James
Surrender by Pamela Clare
Dessert Rogue by Suzanne Simmons
The Rose and the Shield by Elaine Barrieri
Hannah’s Courtship by Emma Miller
Someone to Watch Over Me by Judith McNaught
Big Stone Gap by Adriana Trigiani
Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
A Husband’s Wicked Ways by Jane Feather
Hot on Her Heels by Susan Mallery
Indigo Blue by Catherine Anderson
Between the Devil and Desire (Scoundrels of St. James Book 2) by Lorraine Heath (hardback)


New Book Group #76 November 3, 2017
21 books remain of the original 37:

I finally Have them Listed!
Boots & Booties by Kristine Rolofson
Saucer the Conquest by Stephen Coonts
Echo Burning by Lee Child
The Scorpion Seducer by Bonnie Vanak
Hell On Earth by David L. Porter
Tempted All Night by Liz Carlyle
Day of the Dead by J.A. Jance
White Night by Jim Butcher
Five Gold Rings Anthology Constance O’Banyon and three others
Riders of the Purple Sage by Zane Grey
The Glimpses of the Moon by Edith Wharton
Depraved Heart by Patricia Cornwell
Crisscross by Harmon Henkin
Wizard’s Daughter by Catherine Coulter
Pearl Beyond Price by Claire Delacroix
Maelstrom by Anne McCaffrey
The Wedding by Nicholas Sparks
The Wicked Wyckerly by Patricia Rice
Inhuman Condition by Clive Barker
Night Whispers by Judith McNaught
101 Commonsense Rules for the Office by John R. Brinkerhoff

 THESE BOOKS CHOSEN/WON ARE THE ONES STRICKEN HERE:
Finger Licken' Fifteen
How to Tame a Highland Warrior
The Texan
Total Control
Atlantis Found
Stephanie Laurens Pair
Desperado 
Rebellious Desires 
Forget Me Not 
The Eighth Commandment
Ghost Riders
The Manning Brides by Debbie Macomber 
Shadow Music 
Corbin's Fancy 
Hawk's Lady


This shelf of 35 books are what is left from Groups #1 (11/27/09) through Group #75 September 29, 2017
(Title list reads left at bottom to right at top - 14 titles.)
Rehabilitation
Secret Blessing
Named of the Dragon
Daring

Aunt Erma's Cope Book
JoAnn Ross: Confessions
The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan
The New Birth Order Book by Dr. Kevin Leman
A Kiss Before Dawn by Kimberly Logan
The Fireman’s Fair by Josephine Humphreys (Hardcover)
Bound by Destiny by Rayka Mennen

Rainbow Mars by Larry Niven
There Was A Little Girl by Ed McBain (Audio Cassettes)
Love's Brazen Fire by Betina Krahn 

(Title list reads left at bottom to right at top - 21 titles.)
Plan of Attack by Dan Brown
(*Three more very old books from my Gothics box.)
*The Man in the Garden by Paule Mason (1969 - yellowed)
Fire Dancer by Ann Maxwell
*Four books are very old; pulled from a box of gothic novels I found.
*Maggie – Her Marriage by Taylor Caldwell (1953 very old, yellowed pages, some stain damage doesn't effect reading)
First Things First by Stephen R. Covey- Audio Cassette
Trilogy Of Mysteries Audio Book Shadow Prey, There Was A Little Girl, Smokescreen Audio Cassettes (NOT CDs)
Raintree Haunted by Linda Winstead Jones (spine creases)
The Shadowing by Joan Overfield
The Sweetheart Dance by Patti Ann Colt
BOX 4 2015 (reboxed from Boxes 47-53)
Undateable by Ellen Rakieten & Anne Coyle
Jezebel by Katherine Sutcliff
The Hidden Truth of Cytech's Randall Forty by Vickie Kennedy
Breakfast in Bed by Sandra Brown - Audio Cassette Tapes (link is for mass media version)
BOX 3 2015 (reboxed from Boxes 39- 47)
Shetland Summer by Janet Lynnford
BOX 2 2015 (reboxed from Boxes 24- 38)
The Trailsman: Texas Lead Slingers by Jon Sharpe
A Courtesans Guide to Getting Your Man by Susan Donovan and Celeste Bradley -- NOTE This book has dog bite damage; it is missing half back cover and the edges of pages in the back third of the book... it does not effect the text but I will understand if no one wants this one
An Honorable Man by Rosemary Rogers (spine creases)
The Willful Widow by Valerie King (spine wear)
Foundation (Foundation Novels) by Isaac Asimov
BOX #1 2015 (reboxed from Boxes 1- 23)
Ghost Writer (Shivers #3) by M.D. Spenser
Alien Chronicles - The Crimson Claw by Deborah Chester

If you saw the pictures posted of my bookshelves and boxes you know I do have lots of books! And that doesn't include the other eight or so boxes at my office!! And more books as I find deals too good to pass up! I am sharing my book bounty by these Friday Pick Giveaways.

I started Friday Pick on November 27, 2009 and in almost EIGHT years I have posted 75 groups of 16 (1,200) books to find new homes! (as of November 2, 2017).

I am happy to say that so far about 1,156+books have found new homes through this feature! YAY. [A month or so ago I posted I had reached 2000 books given away. As I calculated the numbers 11/2/17 I realized that had to be an error. I realized I went from 1098 to 2001 instead of 1101. Guess I was tired; sorry for the error.] I have to update my print out to check the exact number sent out - a few were never claimed. I periodically update the lists - deleting those won. You can still go to the Friday Pick list link to see older posts and the older lists book pictures if you want!

Note rules here regarding international entries.
Because postage to overseas can be prohibitive I am willing to give a $5.00 book certificate to international winners - Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders, ARe, TWRP, ClassAct Books, eTreasures, Desert Breeze, etc....you tell me where and I'll set it up. So for my overseas visitors your comment may indicate a smaller book and I'll check postage or note your choice of gift card.

I learned that The Book Depository does not ship to everywhere. The postage for some of the books to far away places runs between $7.00 and $10.00 and up. Since I would award $5.00 for The Book Depository to an international winner, as an alternative you may choose a smaller book and we will hope the postage will not exceed $6.00. If the postage is more, or if you want to pick a larger book and you are willing to pay any extra postage beyond the $6.00 I will work with you on that. This may not make a difference to many but if it helps one or two of you to give one of my books a home that will make me happy too. :o)

Repeating this helpful blog tip: You can right click on a link and you will be given the choice to open the link in a new window or tab so you do not navigate away from the screen you are on!! I use this all the time!

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Audible Book Review: Across the Nightingale Floor by Lian Hearn

This is engaging Asian fantasy - action, love, evil and magic.
Across the Nightingale Floor
Tales of the Otori, Book One
By: Lian Hearn
Narrated by: Kevin Gray, Aiko Nakasone
Series: Tales of the Otori, Book 1
Length: 8 hrs and 25 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 09-12-03
Language: English
Publisher: HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books
Genre: Epic Fantasy
My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0


Publisher's Summary
A tour-de-force novel set in ancient Japan filled with passion, fantasy, and feuding warlords. The first volume in the highly anticipated Tales of the Otori trilogy.
Sixteen-year-old Takeo's village has been massacred by an evil warlord, and he is about to be slain by the men who murdered his parents and neighbors. At the last moment, his life is saved by a nobleman, who claims the boy as his kin and begins his education.
But nothing is as it seems. Takeo discovers that he has rare powers that are useful to those around him. As he grows into manhood, he must decide where his loyalties lie: with his noble master and adoptive father; with the Hidden, a secret, spiritual sect whose beliefs are forbidden; or with the Tribe, the assassins and spies who consider him one of their own.
A story of treachery, political intrigue, and the intensity of first love, set in a world ruled by formal ritual and codes of honor, Across the Nighingale Floor crosses genres, generations, and genders to captivate fans of all ages.
Don't miss the rest of the Tales of the Otori series.
©2002 Lian Hearn (P)2003 HighBridge Company


Review:
Takeo, a young boy of 16, is rescued just before being murdered like the rest of his massacred village. Takeo has already set his mind on revenge against the evil warlord who killed his family and friends from the Hidden, the secret religious sect where he was raised.

Lord Otori Shigeru, a nobleman, rescued Takeo to adopt him and educate him in many things, including ninja skills. During lessons it is discovered that Takeo has some rare and useful powers. As he matures he continues to harbor his plans for revenge. But his actions are tempered by the wishes and loyalties to the Otori clan who took him in, accepted him and helped him to grow.

Shirakawa Kaede has had a difficult childhood. She was placed with another household as a political prisoner. She was treated as a slave instead of being educated and respected as the noblewoman she is. Takeo’s adoptive father is directed to marry Shirakawa. This union has been dictated by Iida Sadamu, the evil warlord. who seeks to control the Otori clan and the bride’s clan so they will not join the rebellion against Iida. But the intendeds have other ideas.

As the people come together at Iida’s fortress, each has a different goal. Takeo is kidnapped by another group who what to explain his abilities and show him his responsibilities to their clan. Now his loyalties are torn between three clans and three desires.

This story is quite lyrical which pulled me in and is enjoyable to listen to. I like the writing style with the scenes alternating between Takeo and Shirakawa. I also like the special paranormal skills that Takeo displays. I found the difficulties of the feudal system and the details of the nightingale floor fascinating. The struggles, conflicts and intrigues keep this interesting. I recommend it to reader’s who like Asian fantasy with romance and intrigue.

Audio Notes: Kevin Gray and Aiko Nakasone do a wonderful job with the narration. They present the characters with good accents and portray the emotions fitting the characters and the slightly mysterious tone of the story.

Source: Audible 2012 credit purchase. This title qualified for my 2018TBR, March Take Control, Audio and Alphabet Challenges.

Monday, April 9, 2018

MBS March 2018 Reading List Wrap Up

MBS 2018 Reading List - MARCH
Code for the list is:
A = Audible; ABJ = Audiobook Jukebox; ABB = Audiobook Boom
e = eBook; eA = eBook from Author; eT = eBook from Tour
NG = NetGalley
P = Print; PT = Print from Tour
LBC = Ladies Book Club
TBR = From the TBR shelves prior to 2018
Favorites for March: three 5 star rateds: Golden Son, Warship and She Stoops to Conquer.

  1. ATBR- Audible Book Review: Golden Son, Red Rising Trilogy, Book II, by Pierce Brown; Dystopian, Fantasy, Sci Fi; my rating 5.0.
  2. NGTBR- #NetGalley Review: The Forgotten Beasts of Eld by Patricia A. McKillip; Fantasy, Magical, Romance; my rating 4.75.
  3. ATBR- Audible Book Review: Dead Ever After, A Sookie Stackhouse Novel, Book 13, by Charlaine Harris; Fantasy, Paranormal; my rating 4.0.
  4. ATBR- Audio Book Review: If I Run by Terri Blackstock; Christian, Mystery, Suspense; my rating 4.25.
  5. PLBCTBR- Book Review and Giveaway: When the Morning Comes by Cindy Woodsmall; Amish, Romance; my rating 4.5.
  6. A2018- Audible Book Review: If I'm Found by Terri Blackstock; Christian, Mystery, Suspense; my rating 4.25.
  7. ATBR- Audible Book Review: Hell Divers, The Hell DIvers Series, Book 1, by Nicholas Sansbury Smith; Dark Fantasy Sci Fi, Technothriller; my rating 4.0.
  8. NG2018- #NetGalley Book Review: If I Live by Terri Blackstock; Christian, Mystery, Romantic Suspense; my rating 4.25.
  9. NGTBR- #NetGalley Book Review: Fade to Black by David Rosenfelt; Crime Thriller, Police Procedures; my rating 4.0.
  10. NGTBR- #NetGalley Book Review: Consent of the Governed by Bernard LoPinto; Dystopian, Political; my rating 4.0.
  11. ATBR- Audible Book Review: Quarter Share by Nathan Lowell; Mercantile, Sci Fi, Space Opera; my rating 4.5.
  12. NGTBR- #NetGalley Book Review: In Wolves' Clothing by Greg Levin; Crime Fiction, Thriller; my rating 4.5.
  13. ATBR- Audible Book Review: Lords of Space by Michael Wallace; Action, Sci Fi, Space Marine; my rating 4.0.
  14. ATBR- Audible Review: Xenos: Warhammer 40,000, Eisenhorn by Dan Abnett; Fantasy, Sci Fi; my rating 4.25.
  15. ATBR- Audible Book Review: Warship by Joshua Dalzelle; Sci Fi, Space Opera; my rating 5.0.
  16. ATBR- Audible Book Review: Fledgling by Nicole Conway; Dragons, Fantasy Adventure; my rating 4.25.
  17. NGTBR-#NetGalley Book Review: The Edge of Memory by Maura Beth Brennan; Drama, Psychological Thriller, Suspense; my rating 4.0.
  18. eB2018- Audible Book Review: Book Review: Blackstone by Richard Falkirk; British Detectives, Historical, Mystery; my rating 4.25.
  19. ATBR- Audible Book: Across the Nightingale Floor, Tales of the Otori, Book One by Lian Hearn; Asian, Fantasy; my rating 4.25.
  20. ATBR- Goodreads Audio Book Review: She Stoops to Conquer by Oliver Goldsmith; Classic, Poetry & Drama; my rating 5.0.
It was a good reading month!
Total read = 20; TBR = 17; New Authors = 8
Audio/Audible = 13 (11 TBRs)
eBook = 1
NetGalley = 6 (5 TBRs)
Print = 1 (TBR)


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